I was shocked and saddened to hear of the death of Anita Roddick while I was away in Vietnam. I was lucky enough to meet her several times during visits to the Business & IP Centre for her free Ask the Expert sessions with entrepreneurs.
The first time I met her I was surprised by how small she was. Given her reputation I was expecting someone much taller. However her energy and enthusiasm more than made up for her physical stature. She was such a positive person and made such a positive impact on business and the wider world.
Under her influence the Body Shop was one of the first companies to prohibit the use of ingredients tested on animals and one of the first to promote fair trade with third world countries. She was also involved in activism and campaigning for environmental and social issues including involvement with Greenpeace and The Big Issue. In 1990 she founded Children On The Edge, a charitable organization which helps disadvantaged children in Eastern Europe and Asia.